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Mary Barton: A Tale of Manchester Life (Vintage Classics)

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9780099511472: Mary Barton: A Tale of Manchester Life (Vintage Classics)
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Mary Barton is the pretty daughter of a factory worker who finds herself dreaming of a better life when the mill-owner's charming son, Henry, starts to court her. She rejects her childhood friend Jem's affections in the hope of marrying Henry and escaping from the hard and bitter life that is the fate of the workers, who are resentfully dependent on the callous mill-owners for their livelihoods. But when Henry is shot dead in the street Jem becomes the prime suspect and Mary finds her loyalties tested to the limit.

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Review:

"A story of scandal, class conflict and bitter rivalry" (Guardian)

"Mary Barton is the first and arguably the finest of them. In it, early trade-union radicalism and competition between old industrial methods and new is the background to a powerful, often heartbreaking depiction of real rather than ideal Victorian family life" (Independent)

"Elizabeth Gaskell, or Mrs Gaskell as she was known, also produced what has been called the first social novel. The living conditions she witnessed daily in her work among poor mill labourers spurred her to write a novel that would prick the social conscience of industrial Britain, while spinning a gripping yarn. It worked. "People on Turkish carpets," wrote one reviewer, "with their three meat meals a day, are wondering why working men turn Chartists and Communists. Do they want to know why? Let them read Mary Barton"" (Independent on Sunday)

"People who read her always come away surprised at how modern she sounds. You don't have to think yourself into her century in order to sympathise, since her guiding principle was no more or less than a sense of practical, day-today justice, totally outside the abiding gentleman-lady-peasant-donkey-peasant's wife hierarchy which surrounded her." (Zoe Williams Evening Standard)

From the Publisher:

The Broadview Editions series is an effort to represent the ever-changing canon of literature in English by bringing together texts long regarded as classics with valuable, lesser-known literature. Newly type-set and produced on high-quality paper in trade paperback format, the Broadview Editions series is a delight to handle as well as to read.

Each volume includes a full introduction, chronology, bibliography, and explanatory notes along with a variety of documents from the period, giving readers a rich sense of the world from which the work emerged.

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Other Popular Editions of the Same Title

9780140434644: Mary Barton: A Tale of Manchester Life

Featured Edition

ISBN 10: 014043464X ISBN 13: 9780140434644
Publisher: Penguin Classics, 1996
Softcover

9780199538355: Mary Barton n/e (Oxford World's Classics)

OUP Ox..., 2008
Softcover

9781857151855: Mary Barton (Everyman's Library Classics)

Everyman, 1994
Hardcover

9781434405944: Mary Barton

Wildsi..., 2009
Hardcover

9781420965834: Mary Barton

Digire..., 2019
Softcover

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